No. 8 Wisconsin can’t hold off No. 1 Ohio State in Big Ten Championship

The Badgers looked up to the task in Indianapolis, but it wasn’t enough.

After losing by three touchdowns to the top-ranked Buckeyes in October, Wisconsin, Jack Coan and Jonathan Taylor were all over Ohio State in the first half at the Big Ten Championship in Lucas Oil Stadium on Saturday night. But a disastrous second half and 24 unanswered points from Ohio State handed the Buckeyes another Big Ten title in a 31-21 victory.

Wisconsin’s first two touchdowns came on the ground — via very different sources. The first was from star tailback Jonathan Taylor, bursting 44 yards for the score. The second was from the quarterback, Jack Coan, with his third rushing score of the season — and fourth of his career.

Midway through the second quarter, Justin Fields and the Buckeyes finally got something going on offense, set up by a fake punt. That opportunity was taken away when Fields fumbled inside the 10 on third down with six minutes left in the half.

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WHAT❗️ A❗️ START‼️#OnWisconsin

— Wisconsin Football (@BadgerFootball) December 8, 2019

The Buckeyes cracked the scoreboard on their next possession, capped by J.K. Dobbins’ two-yard dive to cut lead in half to 14-7.

Looking like the Badgers would take the next drive to the halftime break, Taylor went down the left side and got Wisconsin into field goal range on a 45-yard gain. He also became the first 100-yard rusher against the Buckeyes all season — in just two quarters. A spectacular grab from Quintez Cephus gave the Badgers possession inside the one, so Coan ran for another score.

A different Ohio State came out of the locker room after the break, blitzing through a scoring drive in under two minutes. After a stalled Badgers’ drive, punter Anthony Lotti could not handle the ball after the snap on a punt and was tackled by the Buckeyes, giving Ohio State excellent field position. Ryan Day’s team couldn’t capitalize and was held to a field goal, cutting its deficit to 21-17.

Undefeated Ohio State is considered a lock for the College Football Playoff at this point, but after losses by Utah and Georgia, some believed there was a path for the Badgers to be considered if they blew out the Buckeyes. Sadly, that wasn’t the case, and Wisconsin awaits its fate Sunday afternoon.

— Wisconsin Football (@BadgerFootball) December 8, 2019

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